literature

Advent of Games II: Turn 09

Deviation Actions

Literature Text

(Neferi:  5500LP  /  Torika:  8000LP)

Torika glances at her card.  "Your fate is in the cards, Pharaoh.  Specifically these cards!" Torika declares, revealing the lone card in her hand.  "I activate Card of Sanctity, allowing you to draw whatever six cards fate would privilege us with.  But because I'm the Daughter of Two Great Powers, I can draw whichever six cards I want.  You see, even without Doriado, my control remains firm," she asserts, drawing her six new cards.

Neferi also draws a hand of six new cards.  "Her control?  What could she mean by that?" she ponders over Torika's strange nuance.

"Though destroying Doriado didn't end the duel, destroying it seems to have done something," the Pharaoh responds.  "Why else would Torika go to such great lengths to keep such a weak monster on the field?  We have to keep this duel going long enough to figure out what destroying Doriado did... and exploit it."

Torika reveals a card from her recently drawn hand.  "Say goodbye to your third and final god card.  One of the cards I wanted was D.D. Crow, and that's exactly what I got.  This lets me remove your Sun God Dragon of Ra from the game, preventing you from reviving it again.  And this will also increase my life points, thanks to my Soul Absorption spell."

The Graveyard mechanism on Neferi's duel disk seems to spit out the Sun God Dragon of Ra like rotten fruit, launching it into the waiting talons of another of Torika's D.D. Crow monsters.  With Neferi's third and final god card in its grasp, the D.D. Crow swiftly leaves the dueling field from the same other-worldly portal it so swiftly appeared from.

(Torika:  8000LP -> 8500LP)

"This is the beginning of the end for you, Neferi," Torika threatens.  "D.D. Scout Plane, attack Swift Gaia the Fierce Knight!" she declares confidently.

"What?!" Neferi shouts back, utterly stunned by Torika's move.

The unimposing, eye-like metallic sphere on Torika's field whirs into action.  With a boost of jet propulsion from a hidden rear thruster, D.D. Scout Plane launches itself at Neferi's monster.  Gaia, on the other hand, is so completely and utterly indignant of Torika's offense that he simply holds up a lance, allowing the D.D. Scout Plane to impale itself all the way through.  Gaia lifts a foot to kick the skewered metal sphere off his sharp lance.  As the remnants of Torika's monster hit the ground, Gaia's steed gives the device a hoofed stomp, just for good measure, smashing Torika's monster into scrap metal and computer parts.

(Torika:  8500LP -> 7000LP)

"What was the point of that?" Neferi asks, bewildered by Torika's move.

"The point is that I have a light monster and a dark monster in my Graveyard once more," Torika comments ominously, picking out another card from her hand.  "I can now summon my third and most powerful Chaos monster of all.  But first I must remove my Dark-attribute D.D. Scout Plane from play, as well as that pathetic failure, my Light-attribute Elemental Mistress Doriado!" Torika explains with contempt.

"You're removing Doriado from play?!" Neferi exclaims in disbelief.  "I thought that Doriado your most treasured card, and a gift from your parents!  You were telling me earlier this duel how that card practically raised you!  Now, after all that the two of you have been through, you're just going to throw her out?"

"Correction:  throw it out," Torika answers, her voice practically frigid.  "My third and final Chaos monster gives me more than enough power to annihilate you and send you back into Internet obscurity where you belong!"

"But..." Neferi mutters meekly.  "...I thought you loved that card..."

"I summon my almighty Chaos Emperor Dragon - The Envoy of the End!" Torika announces.

A dark vortex appears behind Torika.  The vortex begins to churn, rotating rapidly as it increases in size.  It opens to the width of a massive portal, where a pair of glowing red eyes stare across the field at Neferi and the Pharaoh.  When the portal reaches its maximum size, Torika's enormous green-skinned dragon emerges from the portal.  The dragon's body is covered in a skeletal armor, reinforcing its mighty frame to seemingly insurmountable levels.  As the massive dragon descends to the ground with an earth-shaking thud, it roars with the primordial rage of a carnivorous dinosaur.

(Chaos Emperor Dragon - Envoy of the End:  3000ATK / 2500DEF / Lv8 / DARK / Dragon)

Neferi stares horrified at Torika's third and final Chaos card.

"A leviathan like that won't be easy to stop," the Pharaoh points out, though somewhat obviously at this point.  "But perhaps we can turn some of Torika's monsters to our advantage..."

"Some of Torika's monsters?" Neferi repeats to the Pharaoh.  "How do you plan to do that?"

"Just look at the field..." the Pharaoh tells his partner.

Torika folds her arms proudly, staring down her terrified opponent.  "How fitting, Neferi, to think that the Envoy of the End will spell the destruction of all that you hold dear."

"Not yet it won't!" Neferi shoots back.  "There's one small detail that you may have forgotten."

"Foolish stain..." Torika derides.  "You don't have a single trap card face-down to stop me.  For that matter, aside from your little pony, you have nothing on the field."

"But you do!" Neferi emphatically reminds her opponent.  "Because you removed two monsters from play, your Soul Absorption activates.  This allows you to absorb the energy of the souls of all the monsters you've removed from play.  This will give you 1000 additional life points... assuming you can handle it," Neferi explains ominously, the Millennium Item emblem glowing bright across her forehead.

"If I can handle it?" Torika asks skeptically.  "I'll take my 1000 extra life points, thank you very much, but why wouldn't I be able to 'handle it'?"

"Because it means confronting the soul of the monster you once cherished," Neferi replies somberly.  She points aggressively at Torika as the Millennium Item symbol on her forehead glows even brighter.  "You must confront the soul of the monster you abandoned in your quest to destroy our world!  Face your Elemental Mistress Doriado, and answer for the darkness within your heart!  PENALTY GAME!"

Both Torika and Neferi stand motionless, completely oblivious to any and all monsters on the field.  A much larger glyph of the Millennium Item symbol projects itself from Neferi's forehead.  A similar glowing symbol appears on Torika's forehead, seeming to freeze her comatose except for some indiscriminate muttering.

*-*-*

Torika turns her head back and forth repeatedly, trying to find where the rest of the duel had disappeared to.  The last thing she can remember is seeing the Millennium Puzzle's symbol before being transported to this dank, muggy plane.  It is as if a heavy fog rolled in over her duel, though that wouldn't explain why her monsters all disappeared.

"You coward, Neferi!" Torika shouts, only for her own echoes to reply to her.  "What did you do to me?!"

With no reply for several moments, Torika figures she has nothing to lose by exploring whatever strange realm Neferi warped her into.  She walks forward.  Her walk then breaks into a brisk run, then a dead run as she charges ahead into the foreboding darkness, but nothing changes.  Torika charges ahead, running so fast and so far that she exhausts herself in mere moments.  She pauses to catch her breath by leaning on her knees, preparing for another mad dash.  Eventually, she would be able to escape whatever pocket dimension Neferi trapped her in, and then that twerpy teenager and her pet Pharaoh would pay...

With her very next step forward, Torika feels something smooth and brittle give way beneath her sneaker with a series of rough cracks.  Torika lifts up her foot, revealing what appears to be a green silicon board, like a motherboard, smashed into shards beneath her footstep.

"It's broken..." a faint voice states, barely audible at no louder than a childish whisper.

"Who said that?!" Torika inquires aggressively, turning her head frantically.

"You broke him..." the voice states, rising to more audible levels and beginning to reek of a bizarre familiarity.

"Broke what?!" Torika yells back at the mysterious voice.

"You sent him to die for you..." the hauntingly familiar girlish voice continues.  "What did you sacrifice us for?"

Torika grits her fists as her patience grows thinner by the second.  "Who are you?!  What is this about?!" she interrogates, turning her head in every conceivable direction.

Torika hears a brief jingling at her feet, like glass scraping against rock.  She looks down to her feet, seeing a young girl in tattered sky blue robes and a fancy headdress as she scoops up the shards that Torika had stomped on earlier.

"...Doriado...?" Torika asks skeptically, recognizing the girl's outfit in an instant.  Granted, despite the striking similarity of the outfit, the girl seemed a little... short, for a duel monster, particularly the elegant, mature Elemental Mistress.

Without looking up, or even saying a word in response, the girl uses the long, flowing sleeves of her robe to sweep up the silicon shards without cutting her hands on their sharp edges.

"What are you doing?" Torika asks sternly, expecting an answer this time.

"If I pick up all the pieces, maybe I can fix him," the girl responds.

"Fix who?" Torika asks, irritated by the girl's apparent games.

As Torika's eyes stray away from the Doriado-dressed girl gathering mechanical scraps, Torika's jaw drops when she spies the answer to her previous question.  Some ways behind the Doriado-dressed girl sits a white mechanical orb.  It had been battered and smashed, leaking sparks from a gaping hole running straight through its center of mass.  Near this busted machine rests a pile of other mechanical parts, fragments, and assorted doo-dads, appearing to be parts that had fallen out of the device when it met whatever violent fate that befell it.

"...D.D. Scout Plane?" Torika apprehensively identifies the wrecked machine.

The Doriado-dressed girl stands up, having scooped up the shattered shards from around Torika's feet and piled them into the cloth of her robes, folded and held in place like a makeshift pocket.  "If I can gather all his parts, I can try to put him back together," the girl explains before turning away.  She returns to the ruined machine's side and gently shakes out her robe to drop off the shards she had just scooped up.

"Geez..." Torika mutters.  "That thing is a wreck!  You really think you can fix it?"

"I have to try," the other girl responds optimistically.  "Nobody thought Mommy could be fixed either..." she says before slowly turning to face Torika.  "...but that didn't stop us."

"YOU!" Torika shouts out, pointing her finger at the girl, trying to figure out who or what to call her.  "You're... you're..."

"I'm you," Torika's mirror image completes.  "Specifically your lighter half, the light you sealed away, or so you thought."

"What kind of trick is this?!" Torika insists upon knowing.  "You're not me!  You're just a duel monster!  A card!  Nothing more!"

The other Torika stares away in shame.  "Nothing but a card, huh?  Talk about a poor choice of words.  Honestly, you of all people should know better than that..."

"If you haven't noticed, we're a long ways away from Reedington!" Torika fires back, clenching a fist.

"And yet it's still true," the other Torika replies, turning her back altogether.  "Tell me, do you love Mommy?"

Torika raises an eyebrow, stunned by her copycat's question.  "Well that's a stupid thing to ask...  Of course I love her!  I wouldn't be here right now if I didn't!"

"I know you love her," the other Torika responds.  "But you're not here because of your love for her.  The sad truth is that you're doing all this for yourself," she continues, permitting a distaste in her tone for the first time.

Torika grits her teeth.  "And what do you know?!" she responds bitterly.

The other Torika looks at Torika over her shoulder.  "What do I know?  I know you better than you know yourself!  To think that something as destructive and as violent as you could chain me up like some kind of animal...  I'm ashamed of myself on a number of levels."

"Sticks and stones, weakling!" Torika proverbially answers her copy.  "I'm here for us!  All of us!  If it were up to a sniveling little wimp like you, we'd be sitting on some fangirl's shelf gathering lint until our pages wear through!  I'll never allow an indignity like that, so rather than moping like a baby, I decided to do something about it," Torika brags.

"You conceited brat," the other Torika responds.  "I can't let you win this Shadow Game!  You won't be happy until every other universe our creator made suffers!  And for what?"

"Brat?" Torika responds confrontationally.  "I am your better!  I am the one you run to with your tail between your legs when you're scared of the dark.  I'm the one you turn to when you're afraid of what someone might do to your precious 'Mommy'.  Or maybe your 'Daddy'.  Or maybe even little 'Jeri-kun'...  Face the truth.  I am just as much an integral part of Torika Showron as you are, yet you preach to me simply because I do what you're too much of a coward to even consider!"

"Don't mistake compassion for cowardice," the other Torika warns.  "I've known you for quite some time now, and despite your limitless courage and unstoppable determination, that's always been your greatest weakness."

"Don't mistake cruelty for effectiveness," Torika counters.  "Torika would be a powerless child were it not for me.  Just imagine it:  Torika is the Daughter of Two Great Powers, destined to be the most powerful sorceress who ever lived.  But who cares?  Nobody, that's who!  Imagine all that power going to waste, doing no one any good.  Ever!  How selfish!  That's why I have to go above your head!  It's for your own good, and the good of everyone around you, that I bypass your compassion and take action.  That's why we're here, weakling!  Once I crush you for good, you won't be able to hold me back from doing what I must!"

"Not this time," the other Torika replies.  "You thought you had me fully suppressed, but you didn't count on Neferi and the Pharaoh freeing me from my one lone refuge:  the Elemental Mistress Doriado, the only card with the magic powerful enough to remind a witch like you how much we truly love our mommy.  I held back your relentless hate for years.  And mock Neferi if you wish, but with her help, I'll be able to enact a more permanent solution!"

Without another word, the Doriado-dressed Torika puts her hand over Torika's face, ending the vision with a simple touch and a bright flash.

*-*-*

(Torika:  7000LP -> 8000LP)

"Did it work?" Neferi wonders, watching silently for an extended moment.

Torika continues to stand motionlessly, the Millennium Item symbol still glowing upon her forehead, though its immobilizing effects do nothing to halt her senseless, indiscriminate yammering.  Eventually much to both Neferi's and the Pharaoh's horror, the glowing eye glyph simply shatters away.  Finally free of her Penalty Game, Torika drops to her knees and grabs her head, groaning violently.

"NO!  I won't lose control!" Torika yells.  "You're not me!  You're not!  You're nothing!  I won't lose control to you!" she continues, as if to yell at herself.  "You can't stop me from winning this Shadow Game!" she yells straight up into the air.

Neferi takes a step back.  "If I had to guess, I'd say all our Penalty Game did was make things worse!" she supposes.

"Not exactly," the Pharaoh corrects.  "We did manage to separate Torika from the darkness in her heart.  Unfortunately, that darkness is momentarily still dominant.  Its control is slipping.  It's just a matter of time until the real Torika breaks through.  Admittedly, this is the first time I've seen a darkness this stubborn in millennia."

"Her darkness is still in control?!" Neferi asks, taking a worried glance across the field at her crazed opponent.

"Separating the light from the darkness is not an easy task," the Pharaoh explains.  "The light will grow brighter, but the shadows will also grow darker.  Be ready for anything.  It's still her move, and she has the most powerful monster on the field."

Torika lowers her crimson-tainted eyes with a sharp jerk.  "That weakling won't cost me this game!" she insists, holding out an open hand.  "Before I lose control, I activate my Chaos Emperor Dragon's special ability!  By paying 1000 life points, my monster destroys every card on the field and every card in both our hands, and for each one destroyed, you lose 300 points!"  

"No way!" Neferi exclaims, staring at the six cards in her hand, particularly the top card, with a sorrowful gaze.  "You didn't let me draw six cards... you forced me to, just so you could destroy them all!"

Torika stumbles momentarily, her control slipping.  She drapes her open hand across her face, half-hiding a wicked smirk as the crimson glare in her eyes grows dimmer.  "Victory..." she begins, holding up her cards as they are drawn up by a mighty updraft.  "...will be... miiiiine... " she mutters in a weak whisper, right before collapsing to the ground, the glare in her eyes completely burnt out.

(Torika:  8000LP -> 7000LP)

Neferi has no opportunity to aid her split-personality opponent as her hand of six cards is also carried aloft into the air.  Watching their trajectory, Neferi sees the cards flutter off into a black hole, generated at the maw of Torika's Chaos Emperor Dragon.  Even without its master in conscious control of this duel any longer, the dragon had already begun to activate its effect, and nothing could stop it now.  The vortex also draws in every card from the field.  Torika's monsters all drift up apathetically, spaghettified by the vortex upon contact.  Neferi's Gaia, on the other hand, struggles as hard as he can.  His horse neighs in panic as it drags its hooves against the ground, but the vortex finally lifts Gaia and his steed clean off the ground, pulling them into the vortex as well.

"16 cards," the Pharaoh calculates.  "That amounts to 4800 points of damage.  It's not enough to wipe us out, but we won't have much left afterwards.  Hang on, Neferi," the Pharaoh warns.

With every card on the field absorbed, the Chaos Emperor Dragon itself becomes fodder for the universally-destructive black hole that it summoned.  Once the Chaos monster is absorbed, the black hole's gravitational pull grows duller and weaker.  It pulsates with energy, culminated by the destruction of so many cards.  Finally, the black hole tears itself apart with a mighty burst of light and energy, like a big bang upon the very field of battle.  Neferi screams in agony as the searing quantum shrapnel shreds past her.  No defense could ever prepare her for a power like this, but despite its might, she somehow endures until the explosive force finally dissipates.

(Neferi:  5500LP -> 700LP)

Neferi falls to her knees, wondering if the soreness that now permeates her entire body would ever go away.  Nevertheless, she forces her way past the pain of every iota of movement she makes.  She looks across the field, seeing that it is almost entirely barren.  Almost... were it not for a familiar metallic sphere.

(D.D. Scout Plane:  800ATK / 1200DEF / Lv3 / Machine / DARK)

"WHAT?!" Neferi exclaims in a shrill pitch.  "How is that junk heap still there?!  I thought Chaos Emperor Dragon destroyed everything!"

"Of course!" the Pharaoh recalls.  "Torika's D.D. Scout Plane can return itself to the field at the end of the turn when it's removed from play.  Torika wanted to remove D.D. Scout Plane to summon her Chaos Emperor Dragon so she could destroy our defenses and severely damage our life points, then she could summon her D.D. Scout Plane back to the field for one last attack."

"That's a broken combo..." Neferi remarks with disgust.

"The good news is that activating her D.D. Scout Plane signals the end of her turn, so she can't attack us just yet," the Pharaoh explains.  "But we can't just defend with another monster.  We need to draw something that can stop Torika's monsters indefinitely."

Neferi makes her next draw, seeing her card is the Swords of Revealing Light, exactly the card the Pharaoh was looking for.  She turns to her opponent, preparing to declare the activation of her spell, only to notice that Torika is completely comatose.

"...Torika?" Neferi calls out timidly.  "Torika!" she calls out louder, heading for her opponent.

"Wait!" the Pharaoh halts Neferi.  "This could just be another trick.  Torika's darkness is strong enough to overcome her light side at any time.  Play your Swords of Revealing Light to immobilize her monsters first.  Then, when it's safe, you can check on her," he advises cautiously.

Neferi turns to her card.  "Good point, Yami.  I activate Swords of Revealing Light... though it's kinda' silly to say it out loud when Torika probably can't even hear me..." she thinks aloud.

"...I can hear you..."

On the other side of the field, Torika begins picking herself up off the ground.  She dusts herself off as she climbs to a knee.  Slowly, she turns her gaze to meet Neferi's, staring up at the Queen of Games with untainted emerald eyes.  "I'm... free," she says aloud, though to no one in particular.

"Torika!" Neferi calls out with a wide smile of relief.  "The darkness of your heart is broken!  You can forfeit this duel and end this Shadow Game that your dark half dragged you into!"

Torika stands to her feet as she continues to nonchalantly dust herself off, lacking the enthusiasm for her freedom that Neferi seemed too eager to share.  "Why would I do that?"  She then looks up at Neferi.  "I can't forfeit this duel.  One way or another, there has to be a winner.  Otherwise, I'll never be truly free..." she laments.

Neferi braces herself behind her duel disk.  "What do you mean... 'free'?" she asks apprehensively.

"Don't be afriad," Torika eases the mind of her tense opponent.  "You're a very brave warrior, Neferi.  I saw what you and the Pharaoh did to my kaos.  I've never seen anything like it before."

"Your what?" Neferi asks, as if having missed something Torika said.

"It's what you might call my 'darker half'," Torika clarifies.  "I believe you call it a 'Yami' in your world.  Where I'm from, such a presence is simply called kaos.  Even in my world, my kaos is considered incredibly powerful, one of the strongest ever.  It's probably even stronger than the spirit of the Pharaoh that aids you.  If you didn't break through to my true heart, you might never have beaten it.  And now that I'm free, I need your help... to win."

"Win?!" Neferi replies.  "You've got ten times my score!  I'm gonna' go out on a limb here, but I don't think you need any help winning."

Torika stares down at her deck.  "Tell me, Neferi, Pharaoh.  When you play these 'Shadow Games', you usually face other people, right?  Because that's not what's happening here.  In fact, you're not playing this Shadow Game at all.  I'm playing this game... against myself, against my very kaos."  Torika turns her attention to her right forearm arm, as if feeling some ancient, sinister burn from another life.  She grabs hold of her bizarrely sore arm and continues.

"Though I could never defeat such a power on my own, I made a wager to my kaos that the Nameless Pharaoh and his vessel could defeat us in a duel.  But we didn't have enough power to travel to Yugi's world.  Instead, we could only travel to this world, linked to my world by a common creator.  My kaos told me that Neferi Nash was nothing compared to the great Yugi Mutou, and would never stand a chance against us in a duel.  But I wagered my mind and my power, even the complete control of my heart... that you could."  Torika reaches out to Neferi.  "I bet everything that you could beat my kaos, Neferi!  Now duel with everything you have, and prove me right!"

Neferi nods with confidence.  "Alright then, I activate my Swords of Revealing Light!  This stops your monsters from attacking me for three turns!"

Torika balks at the shimmering glow of the light-borne swords that appear scattered across her side of the field.  Though blinding, she smiles with confidence.  "Good move, Neferi," Torika thinks to herself.  "You have to keep up your defenses.  My kaos could regain control at any moment, and I don't want to make things too easy for her when she emerges again..."

(Neferi:  700LP  /  Torika:  7000LP)
Sequel Synopsis: After defeating Victoria in the first duel, Neferi and the Pharaoh must now face the architect of the Shadow Game: Torika Showron! What is the connection between the three duelists involved in this game? Will Neferi be able to triumph against stacked odds to win the Shadow Game? And why is Torika doing all of this?

*-*-*

If you thought the last fragment had a lot of mythos gags...

I don't know how this is still going on, but I really, really hate how long these story duels can drag on forever. Almost ten pages, and I've only gotten through about one round. Fortunately, that should be the last major plot detour for the rest of the duel. Also, the CED-nuke clearing out the clutter helped, as there's not much more in the way of major combos until the last turn (naturally). I can't imagine this going on for any longer than another 10 pages.

Also, the image of Torika cosplaying as Elemental Mistress Doriado is now firmly etched into my brain. If only I could draw...
Published:
© 2011 - 2021 DrakeTheDuelist
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Nasdreks's avatar
Somehow I knew Kaos was going to be involved in this XD

Interesting twist though, I can't wait to see how Neferi digs herself out of this.